Category Archives: Parenting

STEM and a Liberal Arts Education

STEM“. Those four letters are rampant in education these days. It has become one of the most talked about components of modern-day schooling similar to  what “gluten free” and “non GMO” have become to the food industry. It’s everywhere! Just like trends in the food industry, there are trends in education as well, and some trends can be good.  To better understand our role in the current trend we have to ask the question, what is STEM? According to www.weareteachers.com, “STEM stands for sciencetechnologyengineering, and mathSTEM curriculum blends those subjects in order to teach “21st-century skills,” or tools students need to have if they wish to succeed in the workplace of the “future.” The idea is that in order to be prepared for jobs and compete with students from different parts of the world, students here in the US need to be able to solve problems, find and use evidence, collaborate on projects, and think critically.” Since a Liberal Arts, and especially a Classical Christian, education already focuses on developing those skills in our students, STEM in a Liberal Arts environment is a very powerful thing.
Recently there have been numerous articles and studies done to back up this idea that classically trained students will perform better in the areas of STEM because the requirement of those skills are part of student’s daily expectations in the classroom. In 2017 the article Liberal Arts is the Foundation for Professional Success in the 21st Century appeared in Huffington Post.  An excerpt from the article states:  “Tomorrow’s job markets demand creative, collaborative workers to reinvigorate and reshape our social and educational structures as well as our business models. To do so, graduates need open minds and rich, diverse educational experiences from which to draw. The fundamental values of a liberal arts education, with their emphasis on a general education and creating well-rounded graduates, expand students’ abilities to think through various challenges, contradictions, and tensions by design.”  The same article notes that the “2016 Job Outlook survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers found that hiring personnel increasingly value and prioritize the skills developed in liberal arts institutions and others, including the World Economic Forum, have made similar claims, citing a need for skills like: complex problem-solving, creativity, coordinating with others, cognitive flexibility, boundless curiosity, and deep generalism.”
“Knowing how to think empowers you far beyond those who know only what to think.”
How do our students perform when it comes to STEM programs? Very well! Classical Christian education at its core focuses on asking children to rise to a higher standard. The fundamental skills in a liberal arts environment are learning to think critically and to solve problems by accessing and analyzing information. This challenges them to think creatively and adapt to various circumstances and tasks. The training and education they receive can be rigorous but the preparation they receive is unlike any other main stream education. For this reason, ACA students possess the skills they need to keep up with educational trends.  Students that are well read and are taught to effectively communicate through writing and speaking, are naturally good thinkers.  They are able to teach and equip themselves and are prepared for the growing trends in an ever changing market.  Most importantly, ACA students are grounded in a biblical worldview that, when coupled with the ability to “think”, provides the ultimate framework for success in all of life. The bottom line is students who have been educated in a liberal arts environment are receiving the tools they need to be successful leaders in science, technology, engineering, math, and anything else they may decide to pursue!

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Good Tidings of Great Joy for ACA Parents in 2018

Dear Annapolis friends and family (including Dufflepuds, Marshwiggles, Fauns, and other friendly Narnians),

The fog of Christmas holiday cheer has receded and a new year has finally dawned. Gone are the holiday parties, late nights, sleeping in, and marathon Netflix binge watching! A new era of dieting, exercise, and self-improvement resolutions has arrived. My own personal resolution involves growing my beard to James Harden proportions!  While the end of 2017 might not be the end of the world as we know it, I still feel fine. Here’s why: 2018 is shaping up to be one of best years ever for ACA families.

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The Mission of Annapolis: A Grandparent’s Testimony

My name is Diane Carter.  I’m a teacher here in the upper schools as a science and Bible teacher and have been for most of the years since the doors opened over 20 years ago.  I’m also a parent here–my four children having passed through the halls of Annapolis with my last one sitting here today, a junior.  I’m also a grandparent with a grandson here in kindergarten.  I’ve been asked to address you this morning to share my heart as to why I have such a deep and long participation as a teacher in Classical and Christian education. I also hope to communicate with you why my husband and I have made such a long-term investment in Annapolis as our choice to help us educate our own children and why our children are now choosing Annapolis for the grandchildren.

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Parent Academy: The Key to Cultivating a Community of Learning

Parents are the most vital constituency in any Christian school. They entrust their children to teachers and administrators during the formative years; they pay tuitions that underwrite a school’s existence; they volunteer their time, talents, and treasure to provide needed support for a school’s operations. While schools exist in part to serve the needs of children, a serious case can be made that a Christian school’s primary reason for existence is to serve the needs of parents.

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Annapolis Welcomes New Guidance Counselor

Annapolis is proud to welcome the newest member of the team, Mrs. Joanne Bielecki, who has been hired to oversee Annapolis’ 7th – 12th Grade guidance programs.  JoAnne was born and raised in New Britain, CT and attended the University of Connecticut. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at UCLA’s Neuropsychiatric Hospital and obtained her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Louisiana State University in 2004. Since then, JoAnne has worked as a caseworker for ten years and as a school psychologist for an additional two.

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Respecting Readiness

Is your child “ready” for first grade? Is she “ready” to learn reading, writing, and arithmetic? If you attempt to answer this question by looking at her birth certificate and the calendar, you’re looking in the wrong direction. Chronological age and arbitrary cut-offs are completely irrelevant. The only thing that truly matters is your child’s individual rate and pattern of development.

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Regain Adult Authority: The Blessing of Christian Discipline

Our 1 year old is all over the place, and for the most part we welcome this new mobile intensity.

Some parents love the newborn stage and dread the infamous toddler, but let us sleep through the night and we’re game for most anything he gets into. This morning, this thought, brought me to my favorite coffee mug.

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Train Up A Child: Tips on Early Childhood Training

I just heard from the other room my 3 year old son tell my wife, “I’ll protect him!” This is a pretty common phrase around here and he’s an awesome little boy, but I don’t want you to believe for a moment that he’s an exception to the rule (you know the rule: toddlers are insane and unruly little monsters).

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